Rare is the star who can pull off high-wire circus acrobatics and deliver no-nonsense pop hooks. Now more than a decade into her recording career, Pink has managed to find the balance between radio-ready, dance-rock hits and diva-worthy, crowd-dazzling maneuvers.
Pink has had numerous top 10 albums, but none has opened at the top of the chart. Until now.
Pink’s latest for RCA, “The Truth About Love,” bows at No. 1 on this week’s Billboard chart, having sold about 280,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. So far this year, only Justin Bieber’s “Believe” and Madonna’s “MDNA” have had stronger debut weeks. “MDNA” entered the chart with 359,000 copies sold and “Believe” reached 374,000 copies.
The strong debut for “The Truth About Love” keeps a number of superstars out of the top spot, as the music industry’s release schedule has begun ramping up for the fall/holiday season. A Kanye West-led compilation is relegated to the runner-up spot, and last week’s No. 1, the Dave Matthews Band, tumbles to No. 4. And the year’s breakout digital star, Carly Rae Jepsen, failed to make the top 5 with her new album.
According to Billboard data, “The Truth About Love” is Pink’s sixth top-10 effort, and also her best-ever debut sales week. That’s a noteworthy feat in 2012, as many artists in today’s beleaguered sales climate are placing higher on the charts, but with fewer copies sold.
Pink has embarked on a rather torrential promotional campaign of late. She began the month with an appearance on MTV’s “Video Music Awards” and last week appeared on NBC’s “Today” show. Meanwhile, her “Blow Me (One Last Kiss)” has hit No. 5 on Billboard’s singles chart.
The West-driven “G.O.O.D. Music: Cruel Summer” enters at No. 2 with 205,000 copies sold. The Island Def Jam set boasts a pair of hits, including “Mercy” and “Clique,” as well as a roster of all-stars, including appearances from Jay-Z, R. Kelly and Big Sean.
Returning with its first new album since 2008’s “Day & Age,” Island Records rock act the Killers lands at No. 3 with “Battle Born,” which sold 113,000 copies. After the Killers, sales start to drop off quickly, and “Away From the World” from the Dave Matthews Band sits at No. 4 with 62,000 copies sold.
One of the top-selling digital singles of the year hasn’t translated into a hit album for “Call Me Maybe’s” Jepsen, at least not yet. Still attempting to find an identity beyond the runaway YouTube sensation that is her single, Jepsen’s Interscope release “Kiss” puckers its way to No. 6 on the strength of 46,000 copies sold. Her “Call Me Maybe,” meanwhile, has sold 5.7 million digital downloads.
Also new to top 10 this week is indie rock act Grizzly Bear, whose “Shields” enters at No. 7 after selling 39,000 copies, and veteran piano-based pop act the Ben Folds Five, whose “The Sound of the Life of the Mind” reaches No. 10 after selling about 30,000 copies.
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